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Crosswalk.com New Artist Files

  • 2000 8 Aug
  • COMMENTS
Crosswalk.com New Artist Files


by Mark Smeby for the Music Channel at crosswalk.com

In Christian music, this is definitely the year of the new artist. We're usually lucky if one or two new artists rise to the top of the heap and grab our attention, but this year it's different, as you can see from our following exposé -- "What's Best of What's New." Christian record labels are finding new audiences for their music by focusing on a younger demographic, ala Britney, Christina, *NSYNC, and the such. Call it "Jumping on the Mainstream Bandwagon" if you'd like. Regardless, parents are honking their minivan horns and cheering the fact that their kids now have a decent alternative to what's popular on the secular airwaves.

You might be one of those who think that what we don't need is another group of Christian copy-cats. But amazingly enough, just like in the mainstream, there always seems to be room for one more teen artist if they've got something that the audience wants. I believe these artists have got that something that a lot of people are going to want - and enjoy! So how are you supposed to tell them apart? That's what we're here for.

While there are a TON of new artists constantly being released into the music scene, we've picked SIX that we don't want you to miss. These are the new artists that you most likely will have heard something about; whether it's a hit song on the radio, or an ad in a magazine, or maybe even something on this site! We are listening to these artists a lot! They are definitely raising the bar for what it takes to break a new artist, as each project has a ton of marketing and production dollars behind it. Is there room for a bunch of new artists? Or do you think one or two will emerge to the top? Who do you think will get to make a second album?

Add your thoughts to our NEW ARTISTS FORUM!



Label: Word (same label as Jaci V.)
Release date: 8/1/00

Lowdown: This girl has got the goods to become a major superstar even before she can legally drive a car. She's on Myrrh's World Youth Day project, ==One==, as well as their upcoming Christmas project One Silent Night.
Plus: Great production, amazing voice. 1st single, "Live For You," has already topped AC charts.
Minus: Sounds a lot like Jaci Velasquez, she's 15
Hit song: "Live For You" - listen to clip

All the info we have on Rachael is RIGHT HERE - including more sound clips, her bio, album review, and a place for your review of Live For You.



Label: ForeFront
Release date: 8/29/00

Lowdown: Stacie's got an amazing voice. Together with a groove-driven, urban sounding project, and more "down-to-earth" image, she's set to be a favorite of those who think Jaci or Rachael are a little too "perfect." 1st single, "Don't Look At Me," already hit number one on the CHR radio charts.
Plus: Great production, great voice - more contemporary sounding - like Christina Aguilera.
Minus: sounds a lot like Christina Aguilera, she's 14...
Hit song: "Don't Look At Me" - listen to clip

All the info we have on Stacie is RIGHT HERE - including more sound clips, her bio, album review, and a place for your review of Genuine.



Label: Capitol/Sparrow
Release date: 4/25/00

Lowdown: This is one of those projects that you fall in love with deeper and deeper after each listen. This girl has an obvious gift for writing on an extremely personal level, combining faith and real life into a first-class pop project. Her song "Supermodels" featured on TV show POPULAR.
Plus: Amazing songs, great voice - sort of a Jewel meets Nichole Nordeman, production help from Glen Ballard
Minus: can't think of anything - except radio has not accepted her yet
Current single: "Modern Day Moses" - listen to clip

All the info we have on Kendall is RIGHT HERE - including more sound clips, her bio, album review, and a place for your review of Jordan's Sister.



Label: 143 Records (producer David Foster's label) & Atlantic (scoring big with P.O.D. right now)
Release date: 5/23/00

Lowdown: Five guy boy-band formed by guy who ran a modeling agency. Enough said. Christian girls are freaking out over these guys. TEEN mags are even taking notice. Watch for crossover success through Atlantic. They appear on the POKÉMON 2000 soundtrack. Album debuted at number one on the Christian sales chart with highest numbers ever for a debut act. A ton of hype, to put it mildly. Fall tour with Jaci V., and support from Macy's.
Plus: Great production, great harmonies, great alternative to BSB & *NSYNC
Minus: Guys can't dance, songs are mostly forgettable.
Hit song: "Written On My Heart" - listen to clip

All the info we have on Plus One is RIGHT HERE - including more sound clips, their bio, album review, and a place for your review of The Promise.



Label: Myrrh
Release date: 6/20/00

Lowdown: Carlos Santana meets Burlap To Cashmere - it's a no holds barred praise jam. Infectious and inspiring. Listening to the project makes your mouth water thinking about how great their live show must be!
Plus: Amazing songs, great production with horns, great praise, high energy
Minus: can't think of any
Hit song: "Lord, I Come Before You" - listen to clip

All the info we have on Salvador is RIGHT HERE - including more sound clips, their bio, album review, and a place for your review of Salvador.



Label: Essential (potential for pop crossover through Jive Records - home to Britney, BSB, *NSYNC)
Release date: 9/26/00

Lowdown: Heavily involved in public school ministry in the U.K., this intercontinental female duo is desiring to encourage and disciple young people. Fall tour with RAZE will win this group fans with their high-energy pop glee. V*Enna gracefully bridges the gap between lip-glossed teen pop music and ministry-driven artistry.
Plus: Great production, a TON of fun
Minus: sounds a lot like Britney S.
Hit song: "Where I Wanna Be" - listen to clip

All the info we have on V*Enna is RIGHT HERE - including more sound clips, their bio, album review, and a place for your review of Where I Wanna Be.


Others to check out:
Click on name to read their bio & get info on their CDs

{{Mark Schultz}} - first single "I Am The Way" spent four weeks at top of AC radio chart. 2nd single "He's My Son" has received moderate acceptance on mainstream AC stations.
{{Jake}} - trio of brothers from Canada - cute boys, but actually write and play instruments!
{{ZOEgirl}} - trio of girls singing upbeat dance-pop, opening for Carman's tour to over a million people.
{{Earthsuit}} - musical hodge-podge, slams the eardrums with every genre imaginable
{{Mary Mary}} - Sister Sister duo that scored huge mainstream pop smash with "Shackles (Praise You)"
{{1NC}} - Kirk Franklin's latest endeavor - a grown up God's Property of sorts
{{Nicol Smith}} - great vocalist from Selah, with Curb Records pushing her to mainstream, something big could break here
{{John Reuben}} - this is the artist that is needed to bring hip-hop to the Christian masses - not because he's white, but because he's really good.
{{Relient K}} - sassy, irreverent punk ala Blink 182 - perfect for the youth group
{{dj maj}} - first class DJ offering Christian music's first "mixtape"
{{Sammy Ward}} - he delivers pop praise with a huge established fan base in the Southeast U.S.
{{Luna Halo}} - a couple guys from Reality Check reformed as this classy Brit-rock/pop outfit, produced by mastermind Monroe Jones


Add your thoughts to our NEW ARTISTS FORUM!